Nate Ralph, The Verge:

The Envy x2’s 11.6-inch IPS display offers a 1366 x 768 pixel resolution and made a strong impression during our (admittedly limited) hands-on time, serving up bright, crisp images despite the room’s overly enthusiastic fluorescent lighting.

The 400-nit 135-ppi IPS LCD is quite bright, and is more than competitive with the 375-nit Samsung LTH133BT01A03-based mid-2011 11.6-inch MacBook Air. One big difference is the ENVY X2 sports an IPS LCD while the MacBook Air doesn’t. But maybe I’m comparing apples to oranges. Maybe I should be comparing the ENVY X2 to the iPad with a third-party keyboard, like the Brydge. Then it becomes clear how inferior the ENVY X2’s 11.6-inch IPS LCD is to the 2048×1536 9.7-inch IPS LCD in the iPad.

Sony NEX-5R

Chris Foresman, Ars Technica:

Sony said that the NEX-5R includes a redesigned 16.1 megapixel Exmor CMOS sensor, which integrates 99 phase-detection AF points. The NEX-5R uses those points to quickly acquire a focus point, and then uses contrast detection to refine the focus point (or “confirm extremely fine, precise details,” according to Sony). Phase detection is also used during high-speed continuous shooting in order to achieve continuous AF at 10 frames per second.

Phase detection AF is used in higher end cameras such as DSLRs. Contrast detection AF is used in lower end cameras such as point-and-shoot cameras and most mirror-less cameras. Phase detection is faster, but contrast detection can be more accurate. The NEX-5R has both. This is the most important feature that makes the NEX-5R better than the NEX-5N. Available in October and priced at US$650 for the body only or $750 with an 18-55 mm kit lens.

Sony XBR-84X900

Sony: The Sony XBR-84X900 is an 84-inch 4K LCD TV with a 3840×2160 pixel format and will be available Q4’12. Here are some technical specs:

  • Video Engine: 4K X-Reality PRO with 4K up-conversion (XCA8-4K chip)
  • Motion Blur Reduction: Motionflow XR960
  • Backlight: Dynamic Edge LED with local dimming
  • 3D: Full HD 3D
  • Audio: 50 W 10-unit speaker system with subwoofer, S-Force Surround 3D (simulated 5.1)
  • Weight: 176.3 pounds (80 kg)
  • Dimensions (HxWxD, w/o stand): 44.75×84.25×3.625 inches (113.7x214x9.2 cm)

So, where’s the 4K content? David Pierce, The Verge:

The question, as always: where will content come from? The TV can display footage up to 3,840 x 2,160 in resolution, but there’s not that much of the content out there. We asked Sony America COO Phil Molyneux that question, and his answer was basically “it’s coming later.”

I guess we should be happy with 4K up-conversion for the time being.

Samsung ATIV S

The Samsung ATIV S sports a 4.8-inch ‘HD’ Super AMOLED display, no Plus at the end means PenTile. The OLED display is protected by a Gorilla Glass 2 cover glass. Other specs include:

  • CPU: Dual-core 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4
  • Camera: 8 MP rear, 1.9 MP front
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Storage (internal): 16 / 32 GB
  • Storage (external): micro SD
  • Battery: 2300 mAh
  • Dimension: 8.7 mm thick

Lots of photos at Windows Phone Blog.

Beyonce Performs “I Was Here” at UN General Assembly Hall in Celebration of World Humanitarian Day

Create Digital Motion: SuperUber directed the technology, screen, and stage design to celebrate the World Health Organization’s World Humanitarian Day at the UN General Assembly Hall in New York City:

It is the largest indoor compound curved screen ever created – a complex and sophisticated project. It was custom-designed to mold to the inside of the General Assembly Hall.

Ten 20K HLM Barco projectors were turned on its side to form ten 1080×1664 image slices for a grand pixel format of 8856×1664. The display was an enormous 224×46 ft (68×15 m). Watch the video; it’s absolutely grand.



The 29-inch EA93 boasts 2560 x 1080 resolution, and since the aspect ratio is identical to that of a typical movie theater screen, contents are shown just the way they were intended. But it isn’t only the size of the screen that makes the monitor so adept with multimedia, the EA93 accurately captures 100 percent of the defined sRGB color space, and the monitor delivers 300nit brightness for higher quality, more lifelike colors. Put simply, IPS technology plus a cinematic screen is the ideal combination for entertainment.

LG Electronics announced its EA93 21:9 IPS LCD monitor geared for film aficionados, just when Philips decides to kills its Cinema 21:9 TVs.

Here are a couple of technical specifications: 178/178-degree viewing angles, and 5-ms GTG response times. Funny, LG states the contrast ratio for its EA93 monitor as ‘Mega’. I guess it’s really big. Unfortunately the resolution of 95.8 ppi isn’t all that impressive.

I’ve been watching a lot more videos on my 17-inch MacBook Pro and every time, whether it be Hulu or Netflix DVDs, I’ve been dealing with black bars top and bottom. A LG EA93 monitor would get rid of those bars, which would be nice. Just one question: How much?

Chimei Innolux 5-inch 1920×1080 LCD

Just received a press release from CMI announcing a 5-inch 1920×1080 AAS LCD sporting a 443 ppi:

Based on AAS (Azimuthal Anchoring Switch) display technology, CMI develops 5-inch Full HD LCD modules that meet the market trend and requirements for future smart phone.

At Touch Taiwan 2012, CMI showcases the 5-inch Full HD LCD module with 1080×1920 resolutions and 443 ppi. The 5-inch Full HD LCD module features “high resolution”, “narrow border” and “thin cell”, which delivers higher flexibility of smart phone industrial design.

The next milestone for large smartphone displays seems to be 1920×1080 5-inch LCDs. During SID 2012 LG Display also showcased a 5-inch 1920×1080 AH-IPS LCD.

Update 2012.08.29: Source link at CMI, a photo, and a few additional technical specifications:

  • Brightness (white): 500 nits
  • Viewing Angles: 160/160
  • Contrast Ratio: 1100:1
  • Colors: 16.7 million
  • Color Gamut: 72%
  • Internal Video Interconnect: MIPI

With such a high ppi the white brightness of 500 nits is incredible. I hope black brightness levels are low producing deep blacks. The photo does not detail which color space, but I assume it is CIE 1976. I believe a color gamut of 72% CIE 1976 is better than almost all notebook LCDs. The 5-inch 1920×1080 LCD from CMI is an impressive mobile display and I look forward to seeing one in a future smartphone.

Samsung 1:1 Square LCD

Samsung Tomorrow: Samsung will showcase its 21.6-inch square LCD with LED backlight during IFA 2012, which will be held in Berlin, Germany from August 31 through September 5. The direct LED backlight consumes 30% less power than regular LCDs, which I assume are those dinosaurs with CCFL backlights. These 1:1 21.6-inch square LCDs sport a 5.5-mm (0.22-in) bezel-to-bezel thickness and are designed to be connected to one another. I’m imagining a huge wall running Metro with each square LCD representing a live tile.

Apple’s Victory Stifles Smartphone Design Innovation

Andy Ihnatko:

Samsung will be fine. The biggest losers here are consumers. If the verdict stands, then the costs of the judgment will be reflected in the cost of mobile devices. Furthermore, other manufacturers will feel the need to buy Apple’s official permission to build useful phones, passing down the possible $20-per-handset fee.

The smartphone market is cut throat. Let’s say US$199 is the sweet spot for high-end smartphones with a two-year contract. A $20 license fee will not result in a $219 price. The smartphone hardware brands will eat it, reducing profit margins. But that’s assuming brands will want to continue designing smartphones and tablets that look like the iPhone and the iPad. In the short term I don’t think there is a way out of paying a license fee for lookalike products, but in the long term I suspect smartphone brands will do what Nokia did: innovate.

The Lumia 800 / 900 smartphones have not sold as well as expected, but that’s not an excuse for not innovating. Some might argue to sell a lot the smartphone must look like the iPhone. In a world filled with me-too companies and me-too consumers that might actually be true. If that’s the road a smartphone brand wants to take it will now, quite appropriately, cost a license fee from Apple. This does not put a copycat company at a disadvantage because copying requires considerably less resources than innovating.

And it’s possible that the next great phone, the one that shames the iPhone the same way that the iPhone buried the Blackberry, will never make it to market. Designing and selling an advanced smartphone just became a dangerous business.

When has designing and selling an advanced anything not been a dangerous business? The next great phone will come. But it will not as long as Google, HTC, Microsoft, RIM, and Sony continue to believe a great phone must look like the iPhone. Maybe HP should resurrect Palm, both hardware and software. I quite liked the Pre; it was unique, undoubtedly the result of innovation.

Flat Lens Offers a Perfect Image

School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard:

Applied physicists at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have created an ultrathin, flat lens that focuses light without imparting the distortions of conventional lenses.

At a mere 60 nanometers thick, the flat lens is essentially two-dimensional, yet its focusing power approaches the ultimate physical limit set by the laws of diffraction.

Flat lenses… can’t wait.